Description Shih Tzu
Smart, playful, open-minded
The Shih Tzu is a bold, energetic little fellow. He likes to be the center of attention and would like to be with his family around the clock. He adapts to every situation and is therefore a perfect companion dog for young and old.FCI group: Companion dogs
- Size: Small
- Weight: 4-7kg
- Life expectancy: 10-16 years
- Coat type: long hair
- Colours: Black, White, Bridle, White, Liver, Tan, Liver, Dark Brown, Blue, Black & White, Gold
Character Shih Tzu
The Shih Tzu is a small dog breed from Tibet. For political reasons, the breed’s stud book is located in Great Britain. The FCI lists him in group 9, the companion and companion dogs. Here he belongs to Section 5, the Tibetan dog breeds.
The dogs reach a shoulder height of maximum 27 cm.
The weight should be between 4.5 and 8 kg. According to the breed standard, a weight of up to 7.5 kg would be ideal. With the Shih Tzu there is no size division into mini, tea cup or similar.
The Shih Tzu’s top coat is straight, long and full. The hair structure looks similar to that of humans.
They keep growing and falling down to the ground.
The physique is somewhat elongated. The Shih Tzu carries the tail over the back. Ideally, the highest point of the tail should be level with the head.
The Shih Tzu has a round head and long floppy ears.
They are difficult to spot in the long fur covering their ears and neck. The large, dark eyes protrude slightly.
The Shih Tzu comes in all color variations. Two-tone animals with a blaze and a white tail tip are particularly popular. The blaze is called the Buddha kiss.
The Shih Tzu’s appearance and gait are designed to appear arrogant. His nature is anything but that. You are outgoing, friendly and smart. He is a loyal soul who can only be happy when he is with his people. A life exclusively in the garden or kennel is therefore out of the question.
The Shih Tzu likes to be the center of attention and knows how to win people over. When it comes to receiving cuddles and attention, they are real experts. They always try to make their people happy. They can be a little reserved with strangers at first.
Raising Shih Tzus is moderately difficult.
They are smart and quick to mimic behavior. But they are also very stubborn and self-confident. They may question commands or rules they don’t like. Here you have to be consistent and sensitive.
A former guard dog, the Shih Tzu is alert and alert.
He has a tendency to bark. You can break that habit with a lot of patience and training. Due to his friendly nature, he gets along well with other dogs. He has no hunting instinct.
The breed is very lively and spirited.
They are therefore also well suited as a family dog and playmate for children. Because of its small size, children should be careful and not play with it too roughly. Very young children should never be left unsupervised with the dog.
The Shih Tzu’s urge to move is moderate. They like to exercise, but can also be satisfied with several smaller laps a day.
Provided you build in a few game units of 10 to 15 minutes when you go for a walk.
When playing and romping you should be careful not to overwhelm him. This is especially true at high temperatures. The Shih Tzu has a shortened nose and is prone to breathing problems. If the load is too great, it can be dangerous for the little one.
Diet Shih Tzu
The little Shih Tzu does not need much food. His diet is uncomplicated and hardly differs from that of other dogs. He should get a species-appropriate feed tailored to his needs.
His big wide eyes make it hard to resist him. However, the Shih Tzu should not be given leftovers.
A lot of what humans eat is not good for dogs or is even life-threatening. If you want to do something good for your darling, reward him with a healthy dog snack.
The Shih Tzu does not tend to be overweight. However, you shouldn’t take chances. The shortened snout makes breathing difficult for this breed.
This condition worsens with obesity.
The question of dry or wet food is up to you. Both variants have their advantages and disadvantages. Dry food is easier to store and cares for the teeth. Wet food tastes better for most dogs because it is more aromatic.
It also usually contains more protein than dry food.
No matter what you two choose, the quality of the food must be right. The list of ingredients on the packaging tells you how good the food is. Make sure meat comes first and it’s not animal waste. Sugar does not belong in dog food.
The same applies to preservatives and additives.
A long and healthy Shih Tzu life begins with nutrition. Proper care is another component. Then your little lion dog can live up to 16 years.
The Shih Tzu has very little undercoat. The top coat, on the other hand, is very lush and long. Hair keeps growing and needs a lot of care.
The long, fine hair can easily become knotted. It is therefore best to comb it every day so that it does not become matted.
Parasites, pathogens and dirt can accumulate in the matted fur.
The hair keeps growing on the face and can bother the little dog. Many owners therefore tie their hair in a ponytail on the top of their heads. You can carefully cut off the offending hair. Check the regrowing hair regularly.
The stubble can poke your little one’s eye and cause irritation.
When walking, the Shih Tzu’s long hair drags along the ground. Therefore, a lot of dirt collects, which you should remove after the walk. As a little daredevil, the Shih Tzu likes to get dirty. Due to the short legs, this can happen quickly in bad weather.
If it is slightly soiled, it is sufficient to dry it off with a towel. This is particularly important on the paws and stomach. If it’s heavily soiled, only a bath can help. This shouldn’t happen too often though, as it destroys the skin’s natural protective barrier.
Only use dog shampoo and conditioner.
The skin and fur are very sensitive and do not tolerate other products. Pay attention to the head area when washing. So that no foam or water gets into your eyes, nose or ears.
You can use a towel or a hair dryer to dry off. Drying is important, otherwise you could catch a cold.
Make sure the hair dryer isn’t too hot. You should introduce your dog carefully if he has never been blow dried before. The loud noises could disturb and frighten him.
If the long coat is not so important, it can also be trimmed. However, it must not be too short, neither in summer nor in winter.
In summer, the sensitive skin would not be adequately protected from the sun. In winter it would be too cold for him.
In some places, the Shih Tzu’s coat needs regular trimming as it can become a hindrance to the dog. This includes the paws, face and lower sides.
The Shih Tzu is a very old breed of dog. Its origins lie in the monasteries of Tibet. The monks wanted to breed a dog that looked like a small lion. The Buddha is said to have owned a dog that could turn into a lion. This is how the little dog got its name, because Shih Tzu means lion.
It probably originated from crosses between Lhasa Apso and Pekingese. The little Shih Tzus have been living in Tibetan monasteries since the 7th century. About 1000 years later they came to China as a tribute to the emperor. The little charmers soon conquered the hearts at court and became palace darlings.
When communism came to power in China, the number of breeders steadily decreased.
Because the Shih Tzu was a breed of dog that was associated with ancient China and the nobility. That didn’t fit the image of the new rulers. By the mid-20th century, there were only 14 purebred Shih Tzus left.
Some European followers of the Shih Tzu did not want to give up the breed. They continued breeding outside of China.
To expand the gene pool and avoid inbreeding, they crossed in Pekingese. This is how the breed first arrived in Britain and later throughout the world. To this day, the patronage for the Shih Tzu rests with Great Britain.
Shih Tzu Accessories
You need a few utensils for proper care. This includes a brush and comb for grooming. Use dog hair ties to tie up facial hair . In normal hair ties, the hair can easily break off or pull out.
A good dog shampoo , scissors or a trimmer should also not be missing.
To remove ticks, you will need tick tweezers or tweezers. This way you can be sure to remove the tick completely.
Because they have no undercoat, the Shih Tzu freezes quickly. When it’s wet or cold outside, he needs warm clothing . Exposing him to the cold for too long can have serious health consequences.
There is a risk of flu, cystitis and, in the worst case, frostbite.
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